China has begun a promotional year to attract more visitors to the ancient Silk Road that linked China with countries across the Euro-Asian continent. CCTV’s Wu Guoxiu reported from the launch ceremony in Xi’an in northwest China’s Shaanxi province.
Over 2,000 years ago, the industrious people on the Eurasian continent opened several trade routes connecting major civilizations across Asia, Europe and Africa. Together, they were referred to as the “Silk Road.” Now it’s viewed as a lucrative tourism market.
China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) is promoting travel to countries along this route, for their rich culture and tourist appeal.
“We will work with countries along the Silk Road, to develop new products and lines, and promote them together. Our co-operation will be deep and overall,” Li Yaying, CNTA’s deputy director of tourism promotion and international liaison said.
The new Silk Roads, both land and sea, involves 65 countries. Future cooperation will aim to open more direct flights, and ease custom procedures to eliminate barriers to travel.
Chinese president Xi Jinping has proposed the “Belt and Road” initiatives to revive the ancient Silk Road and promote shared prosperity. The initiative prioritizes infrastructure and connectivity.
“The terminal of Silk Road is in Rome and Prague is only two hour flight away from Rome,” Hu Lina, marketing director for Czech Tourism Beijing Office said. “We’ll promote honeymoons and hot spring tours this year. We’ll have promotion packages, working with big travel agencies in China.”